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in Osaka

Destination Information

Osaka is a sprawling city (2.5 hours by the Shinkansen bullet train from Tokyo) renowned for its majestic 16th-century hilltop castle and its fine cuisine. Japan’s second city lies less than an hour by car or train southwest of Kyoto. Equidistant between the two is the ancient city of Nara, the eighth-century capital of Japan and today a repository of some of the country’s finest traditional art and architecture: The Daibutsuden hall of Tōdai-ji temple was the world’s largest wooden building until 1998; Kofuku-ji Buddhist temple, with its famous five-story pagoda, dates from the seventh century.